The best picture books for adults, children, and other dreamers

James Christopher Carroll Author Of A Song
By James Christopher Carroll

Who am I?

My books may never be a child’s favorite nighty-night story, but I think they offer fresh minds opportunities to visit some unusual places. There are goblins in the forest; so let’s go there together, in delight, holding hands. My poems and illustrations have been featured in numerous books and magazines and honored by the National  Council of Teachers of English and the Society of Illustrators. I live with my youngest son in upstate New York, in a house filled with bikes and balls, color, and music.


I wrote...

A Song

By James Christopher Carroll,

Book cover of A Song

What is my book about?

A girl hears a song and follows its call into the woods where she happens upon a wild band of animals, and receives a wondrous gift that changes her life forever. The story serves as an example to those who have forgotten how to listen to their lives, how to discern music from noise, how to follow the path of mystery and adventure set before them. A Song is an encouragement for readers to listen and to follow their passions in life.

The books I picked & why

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Moon Theater

By Etienne Delessert,

Book cover of Moon Theater

Why this book?

If you are anything like me, and of course you are, you’ll feel like you are dream-reading your way through this deliciously enchanting book. Mr. Delessert is a true master of this craft, and these pages are filled with soul food.

Moon Theater

By Etienne Delessert,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Moon Theater as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A young stagehand must complete a host of tasks before the moon can take center stage in the theater of night.


The Arrival

By Shaun Tan,

Book cover of The Arrival

Why this book?

I’d never seen anything quite like this book before. I happened upon it a few years ago at my most favorite bookstore (and bar) and it made me wonder, “Why aren’t all books this wonderful?" The world would be a better place! There are no words, thankfully, as the pictures are so completely satisfying, you’ll pour yourself into their poetry.

The Arrival

By Shaun Tan,

Why should I read it?

10 authors picked The Arrival as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

What drives so many to leave everything behind and journey alone to a mysterious country, a place without family or friends, where everything is nameless and the future is unknown. This silent graphic novel is the story of every migrant, every refugee, every displaced person, and a tribute to all those who have made the journey.

THE ARRIVAL has become one of the most critically acclaimed books of recent years, a wordless masterpiece that describes a world beyond any familiar time or place.

Sited as No 35 in The Times 100 Best Books of all time. It has sold over…


Little Nemo in Slumberland: 302+1 full-page weekly comic strips (October 15, 1905 - July 23, 1911)

By Winsor McCay,

Book cover of Little Nemo in Slumberland: 302+1 full-page weekly comic strips (October 15, 1905 - July 23, 1911)

Why this book?

Now c’mon, was this guy Winsor fer-real? This stuff is off the charts other-realm, lucid sleeping material. His work was done as comic strips, but can now be found in book form in a variety of volumes. It may be the century between us, but these images and text make me feel a little tilted, off-center, and in the best way possible.

Little Nemo in Slumberland: 302+1 full-page weekly comic strips (October 15, 1905 - July 23, 1911)

By Winsor McCay,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Little Nemo in Slumberland as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Little Nemo is a fictional character created by American cartoonist Winsor McCay. Nemo was originally the protagonist of the comic strip Little Nemo in Slumberland. The full-page weekly comic strip depicted Nemo having fantastic dreams that were interrupted by his awakening in the final panel. The strip is considered McCay's masterpiece for its experiments with the form of the comics page, its use of color, its timing and pacing, the size and shape of its panels, perspective, architectural and other detail.

Little Nemo in Slumberland ran in the New York Herald from October 15, 1905, until July 23, 1911 for…


Where the Sidewalk Ends: Poems & Drawings

By Shel Silverstein,

Book cover of Where the Sidewalk Ends: Poems & Drawings

Why this book?

If you don’t read this book with your children, you should feel terribly guilty. This has got to be the greatest treasure of sideway thoughts, words, and pictures ever mined from a mind. Mr. Silverstein’s words flow through us like a great river of giggles.

Where the Sidewalk Ends: Poems & Drawings

By Shel Silverstein,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked Where the Sidewalk Ends as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Shel Silverstein, the New York Times bestselling author of The Giving Tree, A Light in the Attic, Falling Up, and Every Thing On It, has created a poetry collection that is outrageously funny and deeply profound. Come in...for where the sidewalk ends, Shel Silverstein's world begins. This special edition contains 12 extra poems. You'll meet a boy who turns into a TV set, and a girl who eats a whale. The Unicorn and the Bloath live there, and so does Sarah Cynthia Sylvia Stout who will not take the garbage out. It is a place where you wash your shadow…


In the Night Kitchen

By Maurice Sendak,

Book cover of In the Night Kitchen

Why this book?

The best book ever of all time, for instructing humans how to be more human is Where the Wild Things Are. I think you probably already know that those pages are complete perfection. So I will now turn your attention to Mr. Sendak’s other completely perfect pages of In the Night Kitchen. Maybe the second-best book ever of all time.

In the Night Kitchen

By Maurice Sendak,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked In the Night Kitchen as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

From the acclaimed author-artist Maurice Sendak comes a Caldecott Honor-winning tale of a fantastical dream world. This comic fantasy will delight readers of all ages with playful illustrations and an imaginative world only Sendak could create.

In the Night Kitchen is the classic story of Mickey's adventures in the bakers’ kitchen as they prepare our morning cake. "Milk in the batter! Milk in the batter! We bake cake and nothing’s the matter!" the bakers sing.

The bakers in the night kitchen need more milk for their batter, but then Mickey falls into the cake! They decide to put him in…


5 book lists we think you will like!

Interested in immigrants, dreams, and the moon?

7,000+ authors have recommended their favorite books and what they love about them. Browse their picks for the best books about immigrants, dreams, and the moon.

Immigrants Explore 104 books about immigrants
Dreams Explore 44 books about dreams
The Moon Explore 100 books about the moon

And, 3 books we think you will enjoy!

We think you will like The Beast Player, Across the Nightingale Floor, and Flotsam if you like this list.